Green Product Category: Messenger Bags; $90
We gave our Keen Cornell II sustainable messenger bag the ultimate test: a middle schooler. He lugged books, lunches and lacrosse sticks, stuffing the bag to well beyond capacity – and lobbing it at his locker. Despite the abuse, the material held up well, with seams and zippers intact. Aside from a few scuffs on the durable rubber bottom, the bag still looks practically new.
The Keen Cornell II rescues heavy-duty polyester and scrap fabric from the factory floor, diverting virgin material from the landfill to achieve both its green cred and its unique look. Each bombproof eco-friendly messenger bag is one of a kind, with different fabrics, colors and prints. A suspended 17” laptop sleeve (ours is cushy fleece!) secures the computer; a simple organizer flap keeps pens and phone at the ready.
The Keen Cornell II messenger bag doesn’t feature organic, renewable or recycled materials to earn its eco-friendly points. Instead, it turns “trash” into gear. Keen reduce their waste stream by reclaiming unwanted fabric remnants and repurposing them into colorful street-worthy bags. Bonus: recycled aluminum hooks and hardware, recycled rubber base, and reclaimed zippers.
All remnant material is virgin polyester. Velcro is new.
We love the unique look and fun colors of the Cornell II messenger bag, and our independent spirits like the fact that each bag is one of a kind. The recycled rubber bottom and sturdy polyester fabric performed well on wet, snowy days, keeping homework dry and presentable. The reclaimed materials held up to serious abuse.
The recycled aluminum hardware isn’t dialed in: the closure hooks were so difficult to fasten that we never did, relying instead on the long Velcro strips. The flimsy shoulder strap bunched in the corner of the rectangular loop, looking lame and buckling the material. The Cornell II’s cavernous interior and minimal organizing pockets gave cargo a bit too much freedom to move about the bag – but did allow for overstuffing.
Desired features: a handle strap, mp3 pocket, and water bottle pocket.
The Keen Cornell II messenger bag could benefit from some minor design refinements, but it’s a solid, fun eco-friendly messenger bag with a great look. The Cornell II stands up to the worst abuse you (or your teen) can dish out – and promotes green thinking with sustainable style.
Grab it at Amazon.com – click here: KEEN Cornell II Harvest Messenger Bag
Show Us Your Stuff
Planning to order a Cornell II messenger bag? Already have one? Send us a picture of your one-of-a-kind bag and we’ll post it here!